Initiated in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, the Louisiana Speaks planning process yielded a physical plan and policy framework to comprehensively address South Louisiana’s need for recovery and smarter, safer, more sustainable growth.
Louisiana Speaks included the most extensive public outreach process ever undertaken for a planning project in the United States. More than 1,000 participants participated in six hands-on workshops and more than 23,000 citizens engaged in a Regional Vision Poll. The project utilized computer modeling to build and test the effects of different land use, transportation, storm protection, and restoration scenarios for a variety of safety, livability, and transportation indicators. The scenarios represented possible futures based on historic patterns, emerging trends, and different policy directions.
The final Louisiana Speaks plan, which was adopted by the Louisiana Recovery Authority in 2007, lays out a clear path towards a more sustainable future for the 25,000 square mile South Louisiana region. It includes massive environmental restoration and growth focused within existing cities and towns around targeted transit and storm protection investments.